Researchers in China and the U.S. have developed small capsules that can carry two different substances separately. The separate ingredients by themselves are innocuous and therefore won't affect healthy cells in the body as the capsules approach a tumor, but the scientists have worked out a way to trigger the mixing of the two ingredients to create an effective drug once the capsule has reached its target.
Moderna Therapeutics, a superlatively well-funded private biotech, has made the leap from preclinical bluster to first-in-human trials, testing out its inaugural candidate and planning to move 5 more into the clinic this year.
Austin, TX's Xeris Pharmaceuticals wrapped up a $41 million Series C financing round, as it heads toward approval (or rejection) of its diabetes injection pen for the administration of glucagon, a hormone normally secreted by the pancreas that raises blood glucose levels. The round raises the company's total fundraising haul to about $60 million.
Seres Therapeutics landed a $120 million upfront payment from Nestle Health Science in exchange for a development and commercialization pact covering its candidates for Clostridium difficile infection and inflammatory bowel disease, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. The pact has a total deal value ranging up to $1.9 billion-plus.
Less than a year after Sanofi downsized its cancer drug R&D operations, the pharma giant has struck back-to-back deals to launch new immuno-oncology drug programs, looking to continue to beef up in a field where the company has fallen far behind its top rivals.
Three years after Sanofi signed on to back Cambridge, MA-based Warp Drive Bio, taking an option to buy, the pharma giant has stepped back up to retool the terms, opting for a 5-year collaboration potentially worth $750 million while leaving the biotech free to pursue its own independent future.
Roche, building the case for its latest immuno-oncology treatment in a wide range of tumor types, posted positive data from a study on advanced bladder cancer.
Pi-Cardia has raised $10 million from a syndicate that includes a new, undisclosed strategic investor to address the burgeoning transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) market. The Rehovot, Israel-based startup anticipates that its Leaflex Catheter System could offer a less-invasive, less-expensive nonimplant option to both complement and potentially replace TAVR.
Sanofi and Regeneron are moving toward FDA approval with what could be their second blockbuster collaboration, preparing to make the case for a new treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.
Cynapsus Therapeutics is teaming up with The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research to incorporate wearable technology and patient-generated data into a study of its under-the-tongue treatment for Parkinson's, building on a previous relationship to glean new insights about the disease.